Puel backs Boufal to shine

By SFC Media Thu 11 May Boro vs Saints
Photo by Naomi Baker | Sofiane Boufal

Claude Puel believes Southampton will start to see the best of Sofiane Boufal next season.

The Morocco international moved to the club last summer from French side Lille and is now approaching the end of his first season with Saints.

Boufal was not able to feature until October, due to a long-term knee injury, while he also missed time with another knee problem at the start of 2017.

There have been moments of magic from him along the way, though, including his sensational Premier League goal against this weekend’s opponents, Middlesbrough, and his wonder effort in the EFL Cup at home to Sunderland.

"I think it was difficult for Sofiane this season,” Puel said at his pre-match press conference. "He came back after five months out and had another injury in the winter.

we will see a fantastic sofiane next season.

claude puel
southampton manager

"It was difficult for him to find the good rhythm, the good intensity.

“He’s a talented player. It’s important for him to keep his spontaneity because we want that to continue, to make the penetration. But it’s important he learns also the good structure and discipline.

"His attitude is good and the last month has been interesting seeing him in the training sessions and in his game time also with the team.

"It’s his first season and I think he can learn this season and we will see a good and fantastic Sofiane in the next season.

"For the moment, I would like him to finish very well with the team, with quality, and with making a difference in the game, but also with a good structure."

Puel: It was important to give players time
Boro vs Saints

Puel: It was important to give players time

Claude Puel has underlined the importance of the seven changes he made for the trip to Middlesbrough.

Sun 14 May
Redmond: We always knew we had that quality Puel on Austin and Pied’s returns
In Profile: Mauricio Pellegrino
First team

In Profile: Mauricio Pellegrino

An in-depth profile of new Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino.

2 hours ago
Win a 2017/18 home shirt signed by Mauricio Pellegrino Saints appoint Pellegrino